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Re: Cheng Ho

>I don't know what is so new about the idea that the Chineese sailed to
>America before the Europeans. I read an article in an airline magazine on
>this  while on a plane enroute to Hawaii in the mid nineties. It didn't
>surprise me then. The article sited words in Native American languages which
>were almost identical to the Chineese. Even, if I recall correctly, a word
>for ship which sounded remarkably like "junk".

This particular news story is saying that there's at least one person
who claims to have more evidence that the Chinese went as far as the New World.

> Given the knowledge that all
>human life sprang from one individual, and that Asian races miagrated to the
>Western Hemisphere centuries, or even millennia before Europeans, why would
>this theory be so hard to swallow. Would it make that much difference if
>their ships came before Columbus, or even before Henry and the Zenos?

That last is a good question.

What is the significance of the various visits to the new world by those
from the old world?

For example, I would say the Norse visits were significant in leaving
records in the form of the sagas.

The Basque fishing visits were probably significant to the Basque
economy, and certainly to the fishermen.

Henry St. Clair's visit was apparently significant in family mythology,
if nothing else.

The Chinese fleet's visit could have been very significant if the emperor
had not decided to halt overseas sailing.  But he did decide that, so
what significance those visits had is questionable.

The significance of Columbus' visits is that they were followed up by
settlement and more visits and settlements eventually leading to integration
of the old world and the new world into one world.

So obviously Columbus takes the cake for crossing the chasm, to mix metaphors
from several different eras.

But that doesn't mean that the earlier visits had no significance.
Without them, Columbus probably never would have sailed.

>I thought this was about discovery of the Europeans of the new world, which
>was already populated by Mongoloid peoples which were so near the the Asians
>that the Eurpopeans reportedly did not know the difference.

I'm not sure which "this" you're referring to.
Are you saying that only European discoveries count?



>-----Original Message-----
>From: John S. Quarterman <jsq@quarterman.org>
>To: sinclair@quarterman.org <sinclair@quarterman.org>
>Date: Monday, March 11, 2002 5:25 PM
>Subject: Cheng Ho
>>``Did the Chinese beat Columbus?
>>Historian claims that Chinese ships reached America in 1400s
>>LONDON, March 9 -- Is it goodbye Columbus? A British historian's claim

[ Excess quotations omitted. ]

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